Let me introduce myself

Hi all,
I was going to lurk in the shadows for a while and see what kind of
group this is but either nobody's talking or I'm not getting most of the
e-mail going out from this list. I'm not sure this is the list for me;
I'm not a botanist, plants are just a hobby for me. I've been pretty
scattered with this hobby, I've got a vege garden, flower beds, pond
plants, and lots of houseplants. I'm trying to focus more on my house
plants and not neglect them this summer because they get me through the
winters. I've discovered many of my favorite houseplants are aroids.
Most of them are fairly common but my absolute favorites are my
Alocasias. They are pretty hard to come by around here ( Springfield
OR). The main reason I subscribed to this list is that I have lots of
questions about Alocasia. All the literature I have read about them says
that they don't make good house plants because they need greenhouse
conditions to survive. Well, I bought my first one, A. micholitziana,
1.5 years ago and it's thriving. More recently I bought A. sanderiana,
A. 'Black widow,' A. and a variegated A. micholitziana Freydyk. I'm
wondering if A. michilitziana might be more adapted to house conditions
and that's why it has done so well. So far the other ones are doing
fine, but with what I have read I get the feeling I should slow down on
buying them util I see how the others do in my house. I bought A.'Black
Widow' six months ago and since then it has flowered three times. It's
just now putting out it's first leaf since I bought it. Can this plant
self polinate? If the seeds could be viable, how do I germinate them? My
A. saderiana which is labled 'African mask' does not look like the ones
I have seen labled A. sanderiana 'Kris plant.' It has a leaf shaped more
like my A. micholitziana which I have also seen labled as 'African
mask,' only the A. sanderiana lvs are much larger and have the same
colors as the 'Kris plant'. Could someone set me strait on these things?
Does anyone know of a good book with descriptions of the various species
within the Alocasia genus? I have more questions but I will wait to see
if anyone has answers for these.

Hope to get some email from Aroid-L,
Gabe Thomas

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